Vanguard Magazine

Aug/Sep 2013

Preserving capacity, General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff, Keys to Canadian SAR

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I inside industry New name, more support for defence innovation A program intended to "kick start" Canadian business is getting a kick start of its own. In July at WestDef 2013 in Calgary, Rona Ambrose, former Minister of Public Works and Government Services, announced that the Canadian Innovation Commercialization Program (CICP), launched in 2010 as a pilot to "help homegrown innovations get from the lab to the marketplace," was being renamed the Build in Canada Innovation Program. The name change follows a recommendation in the February 2013 report from Open Text CEO Tom Jenkins to expand the CICP. In Budget 2012, the government announced an injection of $95 million over three years into the program, starting in 2013, with $30 million per year thereafter. It also removed the pilot status of the program and made it permanent. In explaining the rebranding, Ambrose said the government had been looking for ways to make it "easier and less costly" for industry to be suppliers to government and, picking up on the themes of the Jenkins report and one prepared last Fall on the aerospace and space sectors by former cabinet minister David Emerson, at how "we can leverage defence procurement to maximize job creation, support Canadian manufacturing capabilities, foster innovation, and bolster economic growth across Canada." Job growth was a recurring theme throughout both her keynote address and earlier presentations by Lynne Yelich, former Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, and Kerry-Lynne Findlay, former Associate Minister of National Defence, who both linked defence procurement with jobs. "If we don't create jobs in Canada, we miss out on innovation," Ambrose said. The goal behind the CICP, and now the Build in Canada Innovation Program, is to make government a first buyer and user of pre-commercial innovations. Federal departments will acquire and test prototypes developed by Canadian companies, especially small and medium sized business, and provide feedback to improve products before they reach markets. Ambrose stressed that the end result is more successful when government acts as a customer rather than a "subsidizer." Though the minister was cautioned that some international companies and countries might challenge the program, she said most allies are providing similar support to their defence industries. "We are also going to be using our military procurement writ large to do the same thing." The BCIP is being managed by the Office of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises at PWGSC. For profiles of Canadian innovations that have been supported by the CICP see: , • innovativecanadian-military-applications/ • 8 AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2013 KPMG to advise on shipbuilding strategy The federal government has turned once again to KPMG to provide outside expertise on a major defence procurement. In early July, Public Works and Government Services Canada announced that the Toronto-based consulting firm would provide support and advice as the government attempts to apply the principles of "smart procurement" to the various projects in the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy (NSPS). KPMG was hired in 2012 to look at the government's numbers on the nextgeneration fighter replacement program. The shipbuilding advisory contract involves a three-year agreement, with an option to extend the contract for up to ten years, worth an initial $500,000, and includes supporting the contract negotiations for each of the Arctic offshore patrol ships, the joint support ships, and the surface combatants; assessing cost proposals for the implementation of each project; and providing advice on procurement and project management activities. The NSPS is valued at $33 billion over its lifetime. Next SOF vehicle still in definition The Ocelot Light Patrol Vehicle from GDLS. Contrary to media reports, Canada's Special Operations Forces are still several years away from acquiring a new High Mobility Multi-Purpose Wheeled Vehicle, otherwise known as a replacement for their heavily-used HUMVEE. CANSOFCOM put a hold on the acquisition program in 2010 after it failed to find a "generational leap forward" in capability. Instead, it refitted and extended the life of its current fleet of Humvees. The replacement project was reinitiated in the summer of 2012, but at present the command is only at the pre-definition phase and likely won't engage with industry again "until about 2015," said BGen Denis Thompson, commander of CANSOFCOM. In interviews during CANSEC in May, both London-based General Dynamics Land Systems-Canada and Wisconsin's Oshkosh Defense spoke about vehicles that might be contenders for the program. John Urias, executive vice-president of Oshkosh Defense, said the company could offer a more muscular light vehicle for Special Forces. "The light vehicle for U.S. forces has been the Humvee, but the Humvee was never designed against IEDS or EFPs (explosively formed projectiles) and was never designed to bolt on the armour such as we had to do. What has come out of the Iraq and Afghanistan experience has been that you need a highly mobile, off road, high performing vehicle that has survivability embedded in it – you don't add it on, you build it into it. It's not the featherweight class. It's a robust vehicle but it's not in the medium class. The definition of light has changed."

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